Rising Cases of ChatGPT-Themed Scams

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Recently, there has been an increase in ChatGPT scam attacks targeting the increasing number of users of the popular chatting and AI assistant app ChatGPT. To better understand the risk posed by malicious actors to ChatGPT users, Palo Alto Networks Unit 42 released research on the nature of these scams and their methods.

The report, which highlighted scammers’ use of malicious URLs, domains, and hosts to lure users into downloading malware or sharing sensitive information, showed an alarming increase in the popularity of ChatGPT. Between November 2022 and April 2023, the team observed a 910% increase in monthly registrations for domains related to ChatGPT. Additionally, the team noticed nearly 17,818% growth of squatting domains that were also malicious in nature and up to 118 daily malicious URL detections.

The team then went on to present several case studies that exemplified the diverse ways in which scammers use to trick ChatGPT users and gain access to their information. For instance, with the release of the OpenAI’s official ChatGPT API in March 2023, scammers have had the opportunity to create copycat chatbots that may seem genuine but in reality might be malicious in nature. As such, it is important for users to approach such chat bots with a defensive mindset.

Palo Alto Networks have security solutions specifically designed to give customers protection from ChatGPT-related scams. These solutions use advanced technologies to detect malicious domains, URLs, and hosts, as well as their associated IP addresses and hashes.

Unit 42, a part of Palo Alto Networks, is a team of threat researchers, security intelligence analysts, and engineers dedicated to combatting the cyber threats that exist all around the world. The head of this team, is the renowned computer security researcher, Ken Dietz, who has made it his mission to protect customer data and systems from malicious actors. Through his research and dedication, he has been instrumental in uncovering and understanding the various ChatGPT-themed scams that are becoming more and more prevalent.

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